Thursday, February 27, 2014

Welcome to the World, Sweet Girl | Sadie's C-Section Birth Story

She's here!  If you follow me on Instagram (@mrslniles), you know that she arrived a short six weeks ago.  So while I've been absent from the blogosphere, I've been cuddling this beautiful girl, watching her grow like crazy, rocking her for endless hours, and, of course, working on settling into being a mama of two littles.  Whoever said two isn't that different than one was either lying or just trying to make me feel better about the impending life change!  It's a constant balancing act, but I am in love with being able to take a step away from the computer and outside responsibilities to just spend every hour of the day cuddling with my kiddos, getting to know them both better and finding ways to have fun together in this season of mostly staying inside.  It's included lots of book reading, construction paper with some watercolors and kid scissors, and, unfortunately TV time for Jacob while I tend to Sadie (still working on that one).

So, what to say about this sweet girl of mine?

AH, she is just the MOST precious!!!  She has dimples like me and hands like her daddy.  She has a little patch of hair on the top of her head like my sister, Tori, did when she was little.  She has a cute little birthmark on her side and blue eyes that are getting lighter with every passing day.  Staring at her tiny face while cuddling her close is at the top of my list of favorite things to do.  ever.

And her big brother?  He is so, so helpful, patient and caring with her.  He's gentle and loves to sing "Hush, Little Sadie" to her whenever she cries.  He pats her head and says, "Who's a little giraffe?".  I'm not sure where he got that one from, but it's the sweetest.  He really is doing so well with her.  Such a great big brother.

And now for a birth story.

As I've mentioned in previous posts, I had been hoping for a VBAC, trying everything from Red Raspberry tea leaf to hours on the birthing ball and pedicures galore to speed things along.  Unlike a first time birth, they typically won't let VBAC patients go too far past their due date, unless the patient feels like fighting their doctor a bit over it, which isn't so much my style.  I had to fight a little bit to go as long as I did.  I was over fighting.  So, when at 39 weeks and 6 days, I still wasn't dilated, effaced or dropped (I never did with Jacob either) and looking at an 8lb baby, I was faced with the decision to get a c-section the next morning (a Friday) or wait a couple days past my due date to Monday (the latest my Dr. agreed to let me go).  At this point, it was between having a csection and having an extra 3 days with my hubby to help me recover or waiting it out a few days and not having as much time with Pete home for help should I have to have a csection on Monday, which was very likely, considering all of my stats.

So, we did the most natural thing and checked out which notable people had birthdays on the 17th vs. the 20th.  The 17th was packed with epic people like Michelle Obama, Jim Carey and Betty White.  The 20th had one random I can't even remember.  January 17th it was!

Since we only had a few hours between my late afternoon appointment and getting to the hospital by 5:30am for check in, it was super hectic around here, getting things lined up for Jacob, finishing up some house cleaning and putting the bassinet back together.  My cousin, Jon, came over and stayed the night so Jacob could stay at our house before being picked up the next morning by my aunt, who would then deliver him to my mom after she was done at the hospital with us.  It was quite a timeline!!  Oh, and I cried quite a few times before we went to bed that night, fighting bittersweet feelings as we tucked him into bed for the last time as an only child.  Gosh, I was so emotional.  If only I had really known how much he would love her and accept her,  I would have been more excited for him than a little sad.  It sounds crazy, but I think every second time mom has a moment of feeling a little sad for their first borns' time of total attention being over.  But, I just said a little prayer and rested in knowing that, in the long run, he would love having a sister to share his childhood with.

**This next part includes details of surgical procedures that may gross some out.  Only proceed if you like to read birth stories.

After we checked into the hospital, we were taken back to the pre-op room and Pete and I nervously joked around a bit and answered the bajillion questions posed by the nurse.  I got an IV in the most awkward spot that bugged me until they took it out 48 hours later and faced the dreaded catheter.  Gross, I know, but seriously- if you want to know anything about a c-section, getting a catheter in pre-op before your spinal is the very worst part about the entire thing.  And then, it was time for Pete to go scrub in and for me to be moved into the OR.  I hated this part last time and I hated it this time.  It's the worst part of the whole thing (I group this with the catheter because it's all kind of interrelated).  It's cold, you're half naked in front of at least a dozen people, super uncomfortable from everything you're hooked up to that you have to pretty much carry in yourself and without a hand to hold while you get the spinal since the hubs isn't allowed in yet (I will say the anticipation is way worse than the actual thing itself).  Then, they move you to the operating table with half numb legs and they put up the curtain (thank God), so you can pretend like you're not exposed to a dozen peeps.  Finally, you get warm and lose sensation of that dreaded catheter as the meds do what they're supposed to do.
After all of that, Pete was brought in and I relaxed a bit.

They began the surgery and Sadie Elizabeth was born at 8:18am, 8lbs1oz, 20.5" long on January 17, 2014.  I cried and Pete went over to take pictures to bring back to show me as they weighed her and got her warm.  She looked EXACTLY like Jacob with less hair and I cried some more as I waited for them to finish so I could finally meet our daughter.  Pete was with her, so the anesthesiologist kindly wiped a few of my tears away.  I think that's part of their job description.

I finally met her and she was just beautiful.  That moment together, the three of us, is a memory I'll always hold close.  Thank God for the nurse who grabbed our camera and took a few shots.  It seemed like only moments later that I was in post op, getting some good, quality skin on skin time.

And, the rest is sweet history.  Our girl is now six weeks old and I couldn't imagine our little family without her.  

Here are some photos of Sadie's birth, mostly taken by Peter, with a couple taken by the nurse and couple by me.